Today, electricity is generated from cleaner renewable energy sources like hydropower, geothermal, wind and solar. Because these sources are naturally replenished and produce little to no emissions when converted to electricity, they work to decrease the adverse effects of climate change. The University at Buffalo currently generates and purchases 100% of its electricity from renewable sources. This has been achieved through direct onsite solar (one of the largest on-campus producers of renewable energy in the country), off campus solar generation and the purchasing of renewable energy credits.
New York State's energy and carbon reduction goals as well as the newly enacted Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act provide a solid foundation upon which the committee will work. In addition, our university will further policy development at the local level and continue partnering with NYSERDA and other community partners to leverage purchasing power of anchor community institutions for large scale renewable purchases.
In December 2022, the university completed a monumental project with the newly constructed onsite solar initiative. This project now generates 12.7 million kWh a year – enough to power more than 1m750 homes or charge over 1 trillion smartphones— making UB one of the largest on-campus producers of renewable energy in the country. The project is composed of three main ground-mount arrays (the Bizers, Creekside and the Solar Stroll) and four rooftops.
UB is on track to install approximately 12 megawatts of on-site solar within the year, which will consist of ground-mounted arrays as well as rooftops. This will increase campus capacity by 15 times the current levels. In addition to the on-site work, a consortium of local institutions, including UB, is also drafting an off-site RFP that will boost overall acquisition to 50% of UB’s overall electricity consumption.